Hospitality is broken. Looking for inspiration elsewhere.
Plus: QR code menus being shown the door & US adults more likely to stay in hotels this summer
Good morning. Some of you have told me you want to read (scan?!) the story of the day - that it’s why they’re reading this email instead of listening to the podcast. Trying that with our story today below - hit reply and let me know what you think!
Today we’re looking at:
Feature: Transforming Hospitality - What inspired Craig Poole to do more
Guest experience: The QR code menu is being shown the door
Trends: U.S. adults more likely to stay in hotels this summer than in 2022
From our community: An insight on innovation from Derrick Gyamfi
Transforming hospitality: What inspired me to do more
with Craig Poole, President of Reading Hospitality
Credit: Craig Poole
Craig Poole is an award-winning hotel developer and operator who has used his hotel as a catalyst of transformation in his community, providing jobs and changing the way people think about hospitality. Today, he shared with us his vision and inspiration for what he’s doing.
“Hotels are stuck today”: As an investor himself, he has seen how the typical private equity focus on short-term gains means businesses are run as badly as possible to make as much money as possible in the short run.
Study life: Facing a career pivot, Craig wanted to do something special in the hotel industry, and turned to a somewhat unlikely source for inspiration: churches. “I started reading a lot about church movements. Why are they gaining, or why are they losing? What are the people like? What’s the culture like? Where are people’s minds?”
Hearts and souls: No matter how much technological change happens, Craig believes hospitality will always be about “hearts, souls, and pulses.”
Give to get: Craig has seen that if he helps others around him to be successful, he will also be successful in the long term. But he’s not just using generosity to get an outcome. “I don’t give to get as a business strategy. It’s just a way I want to live life.”
Long-term games: Craig believes that success in the hotel industry requires a long-term mindset. He explained how owners will take out a 20-year mortgage and the financing needed for hospitality requires a long-term approach to produce results.
Be transformational: Because of the stagnation he sees in hospitality innovation today, he wants to help show a better way. “I want to be a transformational manager and leader. I want to lead people through transformation.”
This delivers results: Craig’s radically different way of operating has produced results for him. So much so, he had to add new, better brands to his competitive set for revenue benchmarking. “I didn’t want to get arrogant,” he told me.
The QR code menu is being shown the door
by Amelia Nierenberg for The New York Times
A dining innovation that once looked like the future has worn out its welcome with many restaurateurs, customers, and servers who say it takes the joy out of dining.
U.S. adults more likely to stay in hotels this summer than in 2022
by Lodging Magazine
According to a recent survey commissioned by the American Hotel & Lodging Association, a majority of U.S. adults indicated a greater likelihood of staying in hotels and taking more frequent and longer leisure trips this summer as compared to last year.
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